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Carranza Seeking Operators For Portage, Congress Theaters

By Chuck Sudo in News on Jul 18, 2013 3:40PM

Photo credits: Daniel X. O'Neil (Congress Theater); Chicagoist/Chuck Sudo (Portage Theater)

DNAInfo Chicago reports Eddie Carranza is looking to lease the Congress and Portage Theaters to operators who would turn the shuttered venues around. It's a move that, given Carranza's reputation, is both wise and long overdue.

Carranza has hired Paine/Wetzel and Associates to find operators for the Congress and Portage who will make the theaters "buzzing hives of activity." Carranza, after years of disputes with the city over conditions at and how he runs the Congress, has had the Logan Square venue shut down by the city for numerous building code violations and had its liquor license revoked. Carranza shuttered the Portage in May after a dispute over that venue's liquor license.

This story is worth keeping an eye on because of Carranza's erratic behavior. He's shown over the years that he'll change his mind in a heartbeat and he could decide to run both venues by himself once again. But the mounting legal woes at both theaters may have Carranza acting pragmatically for the first time in a very long while.